Pre-rental terms proposal. Washington state. On March 31 I made an verbal agreement with someone to trade rent or portion the rent in exchange of labor. The terms was for him to finish a list of repairs before he could move in with his girl-friend. The lease was to be for 6 months. He was to be the only one on the lease. I agreed that the next month rent with last month and deposit were also to be traded for one full month of work, starting May 1st. He agreed. I may have more work for him on another project afterwards so I am not too concerned about him paying rent. We shook hands. The house is habitable, and mostly cosmetics work is needed. In our initial agreement they were supposed to move in by the 8th of this month, but it didn't happen. There were many instances when he didn't show up to do the work when he said he would. Then twice he broke off our mutual agreement for diverse reasons, deciding not to rent. He said they both wanted to really rent my home but his girl-friend was concerned about finances and meeting the rent. Each time he broke off his agreement he asked me to pay him for his work. I agreed, although I was losing rental income and it was not what our initial agreement was about. He was doing good work so I was trying to be somewhat flexible, but the only problem I have was that he was very unreliable in terms of schedule. I tried to be understanding as I knew he was going through a lot in his life, and I felt he was an honest person. Then one day he asked me once again if he could rent again. This time he had money and was willing to put some down. That same day on the 20th of this month I gave him a written proposition with rental terms, stating clearly what would my rental terms be. I made him signed so that I was sure he understood what the agreement was. Because of his change of mind in the past, one of my terms was that the lease would start the next day on the 21st, and although he would start being charged for rent, they couldn't move in until all the work in the house was finished (to protect myself). He agreed. The completion of the house was to take him about two days and then we would sign the lease. I was asking him for a rental application fee of $250 to be paid at the same time he signed the proposal, but he decided to pay me what I would have asked him at time of move-in to show that he was serious. Instead of finishing the house within the next two days as agreed, he went working on another project, therefore was not able to complete my house (girl-friend said he can't say no...). Then in the next few days, he would show up sporadically at my rental, but not enough to complete the project. As of today the house is almost finished, but not quite. The girl-friend has turned all the utilities on the 21st. I provide access to the water. Right now the water is turned off so there is no water in the rental. Part of the trade was for him to install a water meter in the well before I turn the water on. This was to be done last as I wanted to make sure they wouldn't move-in before the house is finished. They are now staying in a hotel and because of cost, the girl-friend is now complaining that they should be able to move in because of the money they paid to me and the lease that has started on the 21st, and that I can't hold off water from them. I told her that per agreement with her boy-friend, once the house will be completed, there will be a check-in for condition of the house, they will sign their rental lease, and then can move in. I would like to know if the agreement I entered with my potential tenant is legal relative to tenant/landlord law. He has not yet signed a rental agreement, just a proposition of rental terms, and had put money down. I told him that I would have the rental lease ready as soon as the house is complete. They still have to give me the rental application form filled and signed which I have asked them for the last 2 weeks. I am a bit concerned about the girl-friend as I am concerned she might cause some troubles about this agreement and rental situation, and rub on him as well. I also would like to know that despite him signing the rental terms proposal and putting some money down, if I can back out, just in case this is becoming too much of a problem. Thanks for any feedback you could give me.